“Seriality and Texts for Young People: The Compulsion to Repeat” – an upcoming book from Dr. Mavis Reimer

Graduate Studies

Bike wheelThe forthcoming publication from Dean of Graduate Studies Mavis Reimer, in collaboration with Nyala Ali (M.A. 2011), Deanna England (M.A. 2012), Melanie Dennis Unrau (M.A. 2011) and Justin Girard (M.A. 2011) Seriality and Texts for Young People: The Compulsion to Repeat (being published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2014) is the result of an international, invitational symposium on the topic of Narrative, Repetition, and Texts for Young People hosted by a graduate class in the MA in Cultural Studies program in June 2011 at the University of Winnipeg. In addition to Mavis Reimer, who taught the course, the editors of this collection and the authors of the introduction were all among the graduate students who first studied the philosophical and theoretical problem of repetition and then acted as respondents to the presentations at the symposium as part of their course. Three graduate students who remained with the project after the end of the course worked closely with the logic of the scholarly essays as editorial readers, and, finally, returned to the theoretical formulations to frame the introduction to the collection. Contributed essays in this collection include not only national and international scholars, including University of Winnipeg faculty members Brandon Christopher and Perry Nodelman and UW visiting scholar Debra Dudek, with an additional symposium presentation from Catherine Tosenberger. Kevin Mitchell (M.A. 2010) worked as a research assistant to Dr. Reimer in the initial stages of her planning the course, and Josina Robb (M.A. 2013) acted as copyeditor in the final stages of manuscript preparation. 

The collection of essays is meant to address a gap found in the scholarship on texts for young people. As Reimer and her co-authors indicate in the introduction to the volume, “while series fiction has been an important stream of publishing for children and adolescents at least since the last decades of the nineteenth century, the scholarship on these texts has not been central to the development of the criticism and theory of texts for young people” (3). The objective of their work, they explain, is “to explore the ways in which investigating seriality as principle and practice in the field of young people’s texts might point not only to the meanings of particular series texts but also to the cultural functions of series texts for young people and, more generally, to the ways in which young people’s texts function within culture” (8).   

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